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Hand full of Advanced Users are griping about iMovie ’08 – and they need to get over it.

imovie08.jpgApple Insider has a post this morning highlighting a small number of users on forums complaining about the new iMovie. The article includes quotes like:

“I even bought iLife just to install iMovie 8 next to my versions of Avid and Final Cut Pro,”

Stop right there chief.

iMovie isn’t made for you.

iMovie ’08 is an application specifically designed to make it easy for people with very limited video editing skills to put together a nice looking video in a very short time period. When testing the software this weekend I was able to put a video together from start to finish in under 20 minutes. It was a breeze to use, and very easy to get started with.

The application is completely built from the ground up, and complaints that Apple “mislead” users into thinking otherwise is an out and out lie. “Completely redesigned to help you make movies in minutes.” That’s the description of the application on Apple’s official site. What part of “Completely redesigned” is hard to understand?

Now, if the application completely replaced your version of iMovie HD, and then made it so you couldn’t open any of those old projects, I could completely understand being upset…but it doesn’t do that. iMovie HD stays on your machine, and users who want iMovie HD, but purchased iLife 08 only, can even get iMovie HD as a free download from Apple.

The idea that advanced users would sit in a forum and bitch about ANYONE making software that was easy to use and well made for beginners just makes my blood boil. If you already have Pro tools on your machine then SHUT UP and let the newbies get some software designed for THEM for a change.

iLife is not designed for PRO users. It never had been and never will be. iMovie ’08 rethinks the way that you construct a home movie to make it less like a pro tool, not because they’re trying to “dumb down” the software, but because not everyone wants to mess with advanced non-linear editing when they just want some shots of the family vacation on DVD.

iLife cost $79. There are 5 applications in this suite for that price. That means each application is $15.80.

That means you’re paying $15.80 for iMovie ’08, and you’re getting iMovie HD thrown in for free if you don’t already have it. Even if iMovie ’08 is the worst thing you’ve ever tried, and you just can’t stand to use it…you still have iPhoto, iWeb, iDVD and Garage Band.

FOR $79.

For the 3 of you that are going to jump up with “iMovie ’08 is the only reason I bought iLife ’08” – then to you, I say – DO SOME RESEARCH BEFORE YOU BUY A PRODUCT!!!! It’s NOT HARD. Hell, there is a 20 minute video showing you how iLife ’08 works.

And again – to this small number of users I would like to remind you – the universe does not revolve around you, we still exist when you close your eyes, and it would be awesome – just awesome – if you shut up about the fact that an application was released that isn’t designed for you.

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Kokou Adzo

Kokou Adzo

Kokou Adzo is a stalwart in the tech journalism community, has been chronicling the ever-evolving world of Apple products and innovations for over a decade. As a Senior Author at Apple Gazette, Kokou combines a deep passion for technology with an innate ability to translate complex tech jargon into relatable insights for everyday users.

26 thoughts on “Hand full of Advanced Users are griping about iMovie ’08 – and they need to get over it.

  1. There may have been a small amount of users from the Apple Insider site that complained but you need to check the Engadget site and read the comments there. The thing of it is, the new layout and usability of iMovie is fine for making short clips. What happens when you want to make a real home movie from a family trip? Sure, it’s probably do-able in the new iMovie, but you can make your movie look better in iMovie ’06. When I look over the feature differences between ’06 and ’08, the only significant differences are the new clip view, youtube integration, wider camera support, and wider format support. They could have easily incorporated these great things into ’06 and called it ’08. They could have given us the option of switching between a timeline and clip view. Why they didn’t, well they’re probably trying to push everyone into thinking that home movies don’t matter anymore and that we should focus on making 5 minute clips. Whatever the reason, they could have done better making the app accessible and usable for any occasion whether if it’s for making a 5 minute clip, or something a bit longer that requires more control and detail over a project. Read my comment on engadget here:

  2. Well done Michael!

    I’m tired of hearing people complain about the shortcomings of the iPhone, or the iMac, or the new keyboard, or iLife 08. You know what? If you don’t like it, don’t buy it.

    Don’t people do the research before they buy a product? I mean, if you go out on a whim and pick up a product, I don’t think you have the rite to complain about it when you get it home and it’s not what you thought it was.

    That’s why I don’t have an iPhone. I’ve played with it. I’ve read about it. I’ve researched the plans. It’s an amazing device, but it’s not for me. I wouldn’t dream of dropping $600 on it then bitch because it can’t do XYZ. I’d make sure it could do XYZ before I bought it.

    I can see where this is going, so I’ll stop before I get out of hand….err!!!

  3. Good points! I’ll put my hand up and say that as a fairly advanced computer-using site-building individual, I never really got comfortable with iMovie HD … just because I didn’t use it enough. I really look forward to working with iMovie 08.

  4. iMovie ’08 is a giant leap forward for new users. I know many people who would never dream of making a movie, however, they could with the new iMovie. All I wish that Apple had done, was incorporated the semi-advanced features of the old iMovie, with the ease of use features of the new iMovie. Apple has many great design engineers. Couldn’t they have pent a little more time on the new iMovie, and included a timeline view as an option. Couldn’t they have added a drop-down menu for chapters? Couldn’t they have added one more button for video effects.

    This is Apple. A huge company. I’m sure they could have done all of that, and I am hoping that in the next version of this new iMovie, we will see Apple’s engineers at their finest–incorporating powerful features, with innovative designs, and ease of use.

    DISCLAIMER: I am not a professional. I do not own FCS or FCE or Avid or Premiere. I do own iLife ’08. I am a person that just wants to do a little more with their videos.

  5. @Chris

    When you want to make a feature length home movie, I guess you would use iMovie HD, which is a free download for iLife 08 users.

    I don’t think a majority of people want to do that, though and even if they did, I see no reason why they couldn’t quickly do it in iMovie ’08.

    I’ve used the software, and while I agree it favors short videos, which I think is what the majority of people using it will make with it, I don’t see why it would be impossible, or even hard, to make a longer movie.

  6. Thanks for pointing out the obvious difference between 6 and 8. What is there to bitch about? Nothing! 6 great apps for under 80 bucks. WTG Apple.

    Simplification is not easy for everyone to understand.

    For me iMovie 8 is a new paridigm that takes relearning but it is so much easier and faster once the learning is out of the way. Plus you got to love the new way it manages your video files.

    Complex movies are bettered made in FCP, Express, and now iMovieHD.

  7. There is much to like about iMovie 08, but really, the audio section sucks. You don’t have to be making professional films to enjoy the level of audio control offered by the previous version, and rbber banding is so easy and intuitive to use!
    The first versions of iMovie had crippled audio too, and they were such a pain. Anyone who thinks that Apple’s software strength is in making simple software to do simple things, just doesn’t realise how powerful aps like iPhoto and iTunes are. Apple’s genius is in making complex things simple for the user. In some areas (like managing video files), iMovie 08 exemplifies this. But in other important areas, it falls well short of its previous efforts.
    This isn’t 1998. The goalposts have moved. There’s a great opportunity for someone like Adobe to come out with a strong program easier, cheaper and less powerful than Final Cut Elements, but a step up from the crippled iMovie 08.

  8. Your points would be valid if iMovie were a brand new addition to iLife, but it’s not. The majority of people who are upset by the new iMovie are those who are already loyal users of previous versions of iMovie, have invested time in learning the application, and in many cases have invested money in purchasing plugins that no longer work. If Apple had incorporated the new functionality into the old version of the application and offered it as a “basic mode” or the like then everyone would be lauding the new version instead of criticizing it. As it is, however, having two separate applications that are mostly incompatible with each other is arrogant and short-sighted.

  9. @ Craig

    no…my point is still valid. You don’t agree with it, but it’s valid. Your point is valid too. It would have been nice if they could have made it so that the previous plugins and things worked. Unfortunately they couldn’t because the program is completely re-written from the ground up – so they continue to support the functional and very well done iMovie HD, even going so far as to make it FREE to iLife ’08 users.

    They didn’t make iMovie HD no longer functional, they simply introduced a new way to handle movies and edit them.

    And I’m not sure you understand what the word arrogant means. Short-sighted I can see…but arrogant? How does having two applications that are mostly incompatible “making claims or pretensions to superior importance”?

  10. Nice write up… there are now 6 Apps in iLife, with the iMovie HD as a free download if you don’t already have it. Can’t see why some would find this upsetting. Reading the headlines on MacSurfer or some of the comments on Engadget and similar sites, there are a lot of very sour people out there. Well thought out criticism is fine, incessant whining and complaining is just pathetic.

  11. iMovie 8 has some slick features; if it were a new app I would get it today… that said it is not a new app, but a rewrite of an old app and it is fair to expect that a rewrite retains the most useful functions of the old while improving on its other capabilities. My current project is a home movie I’m making of my senior community Variety Show. It will eventually be a DVD for the participants to show their grandkids and the like. Many of the clips needed some color adjustments to retain skin tones that became pallid under the less than optimal stage lights. I used the GeeThree color correction filter, a plugin, because iMovieHD 6 simply did not have the adjustment range I needed. I could not have done that at all in the new iMovie 8 because the plugin architecture is no longer supported. Some in this column would argue that this may be too advanced, and I agree that all iMovie users would not find this feature useful or even bother or think about making such a correction; however, why lose the capability when it adds value to the product? This not about Apple-bashing. I’ve owned one Mac after another since 1985. Even lived through the PB 100 debacle; and, I would similarly feel jilted if Microsoft decided to eliminate any one of the features I regularly use such as Table of Contents creation (which could be done manually of course) in coming out with a redesigned product. That said, I probably will not buy iLife 8, but can’t wait to get the new iWork from what I have been reading.

  12. I don’t think people are upset that Apple introduced a new flavor of iMovie (iMovie ’08) along side of iMovie HD.

    I think a lot of the aggravation is because iMovie HD is not going to be upgraded (iMovie ’08 is not iMovie HD–as you’ve pointed out they’re two different products). So the bugs in iMovie HD are the bugs we’re going to live with.

    It’s an obvious statement, but it would be a good idea for Apple to incorporate those absent iMovie HD features (the timeline, themes, better titles, etc.) into iMovie ’10 (or whatever it’s going to be called).

    Just my $0.02.

  13. You know, I couldn’t agree with you more. I think I’d break one of the fundamental laws of physics if I did. I am one of those people who benefit from the new iMovie ’08. I do a lot of still image work, but not too much video editing. I have tried using iMovie HD in the past, and was frustrated because it wasn’t easy to throw clips and pieces of clips together and make a video out of it. I daresay, that I had more trouble in iMovie HD that I did in Windows Movie Maker the few times I had to use that. With iMovie ’08, it has improved on the formula of making videos easy for n00bs like me.

  14. Oh, one more thing, maybe Apple should rebrand iMovie HD to something like “iMovie Pro” and sell the next update of it separately from iLife?

  15. @ Alan

    See, I think that’s a large part of the problem. iMovie ’08 IS a completely new app…they just kept the name of the old app.

    @pakkman781 –

    I think that’s what Final Cut Express is supposed to be, but I wouldn’t mind an iMovie Pro.

  16. If you considered ’06’s features which were removed in 08 as features for PRO users — then you and Apple have a serious problem!!!!

    You didn’t mention that it doesn’t support third party plug-ins.

    Apple is weening features and forcing people to buy the pro or semi-pro products. If that strategy fails – they will add those features back in.

    I’m a long time Mac users. Not every complain about Mac is a bitch! I’m not an advanced user by any means. I will NOT use 08 because it lacks features I need!!

  17. @Not buying

    Then vote with your dollars.

    I do not think Apple is trying to FORCE anyone into buying Final Cut Express or Pro.

    iMovie is supposed to easy to use for a casual user. iMovie HD does a ton of things, including that plugin support, that most users simply trying to construct a home movie will never need.

    If you already have iMovie HD then you’ve got what you’re looking for…if you bought iLife ’08…you get iMovie HD FOR FREE!!!

    So you don’t HAVE to use iMovie ’08. If it doesn’t have features you NEED then the application wasn’t designed FOR YOU.

    …and yes, the whining online about this is a bitch. It’s pure bitching plain and simple.

    They have provided a solution for both kinds of users for the same price.

    Get over it.

  18. I gotta say I totally agree with you Michael. I’ve tried previous versions of iMovie and haven’t had the patience to work with it. With 8, I was creating short movies in no time. It’s perfect to break into something as complex as video editing. As a video novice, I’m stoked about iMovie 8.

  19. If Apple would have “added these new features to iMovie HD and called it iMovie ’08” people would have bitched up an even bigger storm…”I paid a whole $79 for THIS?” Like you said Mike, GET OVER IT.

  20. @Michael

    I AM voting with my dollars. I’m not upgrading after learning the lack of features.

    What are you going to write if Apple decides to add those features back?
    I expect you to write something like “Apple is great. If you NEWBIES don’t like the cool features just SHUT UP”

    I wrote because your banner said “Your ultimate guide to thinking different.” but you told people “SHUT UP” when they voiced their opinions – differently than yours. Are you living in Iraq?

    Perhaps you should change the banner to “Your ultimate guide to thinking like Michael – or SHUT UP!!!”

    You too. Stop bitching about people of different opinions! They’ll always be there – get over it.

  21. I have been a general iApp user since the beginning. I used iMovie 1.0 all the way up to ’06. However, this new iMovie is missing too many standard features that make movie making fun and polished for amateurs like me. No DVD chapter markers for iDVD? No timeline? No themes? Can’t open older iMovie projects? It breaks my heart, but I just can’t move myself to embrace this new version…and I do own it. Apple’s prediction of the DVD going bye-bye is ridiculous, as many amateurs like me are just beginning to master the process of getting our old video tapes (analog and digital) edited and preserved on DVD. I have no interest in posting my family videos on You Tube or any other web site. My family doesn’t have the bandwidth to watch it!

    For those of you who say to stick with ’06, yea right…who wants to bet Apple will never update that as time goes on? It will become more unstable as Mac OS X gets patched and upgraded.

    I’m really concerned that the K-12 education market will suffer too. Many grade school kids created their first movies using iMovie, and this version will require their teachers and the kids to re-learn a new application…and realize that they can’t do all the cool stuff they could do in the previous version.

  22. This for writing this post. iMovie was always intended for first time users and simple operation. As iMovie grew, it inadvertantly crossed into FCP territory. Someone complained that iMovie08 dropped TC for “Min/Sec”. Well, yeah, most people don’t know what timecode is and min/sec is much more relavent to everyday users. And the new project window operates much more like a word processor, something many people are already familiar with. iMovie08 is Apple staying true to the original mission of the software. If you need better control, stick with iMovie06, or really, make to jump to FCExpress.

  23. Just found your podcast while researching buying a Macbook or MBP.

    I agree with what you said about the negative publicity that people are giving on iMovie. I was reading all this stuff about iMovie being crap now, etc. and really made me think twice about my Mac purchase. Thankfully I continued to research and found your podasts and learned that iMovie HD is available for free if you want it!

    I am still undecided on Macbook or Macbook Pro, but I know I’ll be happy with either. Keep up the great work!

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